Knowing when to update an estate plan is as important as setting up an estate plan. It is important to have key elements of an estate plan, including a will, but it is also important to update an estate plan if the estate planner experiences certain major life changes.
A good rule of thumb is that if an estate plan is three years old or older, it is a good idea to review it for any updates that are needed. Additionally, if the estate planner moves to another state, it is time to update the estate plan to ensure it is in compliance will all of the rules and requirements associated with estate planning and estate planning documents in the new state.
Also, an estate plan should be updated when the estate planner’s relationships change such as if the estate planner is married or divorced. An estate plan should be updated if a new family member is added to the family. Estate plans can help the estate planner protect family members, including minor children who will need a guardian or grown children who are included as part of the will. In addition, if the estate planner’s assets or liabilities change, they should also update their estate plan to reflect the change in financial circumstances.
There are additional circumstances that warrant revisiting an estate plan which the estate planner should also be familiar with. What is important is to have an estate plan that provides for the estate planner’s wishes and to update it regularly so it reflects the wishes of the estate planner as they change. Estate planning services can help estate planners ensure they have the most effective estate plan that continues to match their desires, needs and wishes.